This year’s NBA Finals will not only crown the championship; it will end one of the toughest seasons in NBA history. The league defeated the COVID19 pandemic with a shorter offseason and a compact 72 game screen, but the playoffs were overshadowed by a series of injuries to some of the most famous players.
On the eve of Monday’s first and final game, Chris Paul, president of the National Basketball Player Association and Phoenix Suns star, responded to the league and NBPA’s criticism of the rapid changes and potential impact on players’ health. One of the loudest critics is LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers, who served as the vice chairman of Paul’s Players Union from 2015 to 2019. They said he foresaw these problems.
Paul did not directly mention James’ comments, but made it clear that when the union makes decisions for more than 400 members, all players can hear them. “Injuries are always uncomfortable. You hate them but when we enter the bubble, everything is discussed from the perspective of players and the entire roster. Everything is not good for every person, but it has always been and will be a conversation. So if people don’t like it, then you know that everyone has an equal opportunity to participate in all these conversations. ”
The Suns’ discussions before the first game would be all about if the Milwaukee superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo who stretched his left knee slightly in the final two games of the Eastern Conference Finals will be playing, how will they prepare for the Bucks?
Even after having two times MVP in the Milwaukee roster, the Suns still succeeded in the regular season against the Bucks, with 125-124 and 128-127 in overtime on February 10 and April 19, respectively. The results beat the Bucks, although Antetokounmpo averaged 40 points, 60% field goal percentage, and 9.5 rebounds in two games.
“This is basically matching his physique, but in the final analysis, it is just one game,” Ayton told ESPN during The Jump. “You can’t refuse this challenge. Just because he knows he lacks a conscience, he is the first to defend himself and just show him the wall. After all, you want to stay between him and the ball.”